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magicjack.com page on DSLReports
Six Month Rating

Reviews:
bullet 159 reviews (108 good) (26 bad)
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Review by jtozer See Profile

  • Location: San Diego,San Diego,CA
  • Cost: $3 per month (12 month contract)
Good "Cheap"
Bad "Unstable"
Overall "Just a toy"
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Arrived a day short of a week from ordering. Installation was pretty straightforward.

Installed on a Vista machine with cable internet that also was running Skype & Pidgin.

From the get-go fraught with apparent conflicts, frequent disconnects and plain "Program Not Responding".

CallerID in did not display on my phone but did on the computer's screen. Call quality was choppy.

My hope was to use this as my Home-Office line. I'll be sticking with Vonage - which has proved to be a solid and reliable solution to me.

member for 11.1 years, 1160 visits, last login: 59 days ago
updated 6.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by davidw07 See Profile

  • Location: Englewood,Arapahoe,CO
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
  • Install: about 5 days
Good "Cheap. Good quality. Call Reliability."
Bad "Voice Mail is unreliable."
Overall "Great for the money"
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Started using MagicJack about a month ago, I have it running on a second old laptop due to the software that needs to be running for it to work. I used this to replace my primary phone line. The service is used mostly to call family out of state. I also use it as my primary number for all my bills. Its nice that 911 service is available and I also have my cell phone is case it’s not working in an emergency.

Call quality has been fine. I have had no problems making or receiving calls. I have had no known down time. Also my Dish network receiver seems to work fine with the service. I can order pay preview movies with no issue. Once in a while it won't connect or it looses the connection. I also assume it's dialing out and giving a stats to dish network so I don't think I will be billed the 5.99 for a second TV. We will see when I get my next bill.

The voice mail service sucks and is unreliable. Most of the time my voice mail does not pickup. I hooked up an answering machine to catch incoming calls. Caller ID info is only passed to my phone sometimes.

Not sure about customer service. I have not had to deal with them, but for about 40 bucks for the first year and then 20 each year after that I wouldn't really expect too much.



member for 13.6 years, 472 visits, last login: 2.1 years ago
lodged 6.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by sjrr124 See Profile

  • Location: Eureka,Humboldt,CA
  • Cost: $1 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 5 days
Good "CHEAP!"
Bad "Poor call quality, Software is Junk, Website needs CPR!"
Overall "For what it costs why not?"
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I use this as a second line in addition to my Vonage. The sound quality is very noticeable poorer than Vonage. The software that installs on your computer is annoying and difficult to uninstall. I would be willing to pay more for the hardware if I didn't have to hook it to my computer. Their website is really bad and difficult to use.

There are a lot of bad things BUT for the super low cost it is a great value!

member for 8 years, 31 visits, last login: 226 days ago
lodged 6.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by booyah50 See Profile

  • Location: La Habra,Orange,CA
  • Cost: $3 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 4 days
Good "Cheap!"
Bad "Has some glitches, cheesy website and infomercial, no uninstall"
Overall "Great 2nd line for geeks, not much to lose otherwise."
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About six months ago, I saw a really stupid TV ad about this VoIP service that seemed too good to be true, and it lent zero creditability to me and inspired not a gram of me to buy it or even to inquire further! I let it fade from my awareness then and there.

Then my sister came for a visit and had one herself. She just got it in fact, and she goes: "Have you heard of MagicJack?" I had a vague memory of that TV ad, but she plugged it into our computer. Within minutes she was calling all over the country planning her business trip.

I thought about it. $46 shipped for this thing and I'd get a year's worth of VoIP, and my own incoming real phone number, and the following years would only be 20 bucks a year? I couldn't pass this up! But before I ordered, I looked over the reviews and blogs and such, and there seemed to be a lot of satisfied customers, and a lot of people who weren't satisfied, plus a lot of people critical who never even tried it. The people who didn't have much luck with it, seemed to be non technical people - always seeming to ignore trouble-shooting steps and prone to hotheadedness over losing $47 (or having fallen for the 5 year service plan and/or rush shipping, etc.).

So I bought one myself. Without falling for the rush shipping, or the tricks their cheesy manipulative website has in order to waive the free trial, I got it 4 days after buying it!

I plugged it into my Dell Vista SP1 computer, and I noticed they had an area code close by my house. I got to choose one of three prefixes, and then was assigned the last four digits (I would have preferred to have chosen from a list of full numbers), and within a minute, I had a dial tone and could call out and call into the number! Sweet!

But there was a problem. The audio would drop out for a 1/4 second every 5 seconds or so. This wasn't cool. I thought it was SP1 that was doing this because I had heard bad things about MJ and SP1. To confirm it was my computer and not the MJ, I plugged it into another computer on my same network. This was clear as a bell.

So I did a Dell system restore which was about due anyway because my computer was getting sluggish. But to prove if it was SP1 or not, I also installed SP1 and hot-fixed my computer. After this my MJ worked great! I uninstalled Roxio because it is not compatible with MJ running, and it's a little fluffy anyway. There are liter tools.

As I set ton install my typically used software packages, I tried the MJ to see if or when it because crippled. It happened when I installed Sandboxie and that was probably the culprit.

So with all I did to get MJ to work, it might pose a problem to non technical folk. They can get an MJ and hope for the best. After all, they probably aren't going to use a sandbox program.

On the service side of MJ, there's been times, when I go to use the service and it has a dial tone, but every-time I dial, it just returned to the dial tone. Also, there's been times when as I called my MJ number, it would yield a busy signal when I could call out on the MJ. Or when my cell said "All circuits are busy" when calling MJ but not my land line. Or times, where the CD side of the USB drive was no longer accessible leading me to reboot my computer. I've never contacted their tech support. I figure, I couldn't get much support for $47. Besides, I've gotten it running myself.

So MJ for me hasn't been rock solid. If there was a fire, my MJ would be the last phone I'd use to call for help. On the other hand, When I need to make a long distance call, it is the first phone I grab! I'd feel very comfortable ditching my land-line if I had good cell service at my house.

The MJ had been totally worth the money for me! In fact, I bought another one for my mom off QVC now, so she can make long distance calls. And i can always tech support for her.

Oh and about the 30 day trial? I've yet to have been charged. I didn't fall for their tricks to get me to waive their trial - thus I wasn't charged.

member for 6.5 years, 69 visits, last login: 5.4 years ago
updated 6.5 years ago

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Review by Lowtarget See Profile

  • Location: Alger,Hardin,OH
  • Cost: $1 per month
  • Install: about 4 days
Good "Very cheap VOIP service, Plus easy to install."
Bad "Very poor web-site layout. Hard to find what you looking for."
Overall "Very cheap VOIP service."
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On 7/28 I ordered the magicjack with standard shipping. 4 days later I got the magicjack in the mail. They sent me the older version of the device. Installing the device and registering it was very easy.

On the down side, they did not have a local number. But I was able to choose a prefix in the same area code. I made a few test calls and it sounds clear enough then a cell phone. After getting the device up and running.

I'm running the magicjack as a 'Windows Service'. Now the softphone wont load when PC boots up. Soon the PC boots up I can pickup the phone and make a call.

member for 11.1 years, 1912 visits, last login: 18 days ago
lodged 6.5 years ago

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Review by gatr See Profile

  • Location: Middleburg,Clay,FL
  • Cost: $1 per month
Good "cheap cheap cheap ....."
Bad "computer must be on .... limited area code selection .. cant bring your Land Line number with you"
Overall "works if you need LD"
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The Jury is still out on this one . Price is right but just dont know enough about it to drop ATT .... YET!

member for 9.6 years, 27 visits, last login: 6.5 years ago
lodged 6.5 years ago

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Review by jchambers28 See Profile

  • Location: Alma,Crawford,AR
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
  • Install: about 4 days
Good "got it working for 2 days"
Bad "call quality sucks sucks phone is NOT usable"
Overall "I am going to cancle my service ASAP going to stick with vonage"
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ordered service got the device call quality went to hell does not like my pc

member for 7.8 years, 4151 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 6.5 years ago

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Review by mod_wastrel See Profile

  • Location: undisclosed location
  • Cost: $2 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 3 days
Good "Cheap, good voice quality, easy to setup and use"
Bad "None"
Overall "Easily worth the price"
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I ordered through the magicJack site (which is ugly, but easy to navigate): one magicJack, standard shipping (supposedly with no package tracking, expected 5-10 business days for delivery), and no extras. I received the email confirmation almost immediately. The next day I received an email that it had shipped and a tracking number (so maybe all shipments now receive a tracking number despite what the website said?) with a link to the USPS tracking site (which worked fine). A couple days later I received the magicJack--way ahead of the 5-10 business days.

I plugged it in to my [WinXP] PC, went through the setup--all very straight-forward, made some calls & had some friends call me--call quality about as good as that for any POTS/PSTN lines I've ever used (so, very good--not as good as Skype-to-Skype, of course, but that's to be expected), works fine with GrandCentral. Calls use about 90-95kbps of my network bandwidth on average--fairly typical. (I have FiOS, but with that bandwidth usage it should sound good over DSL, too.) The exchange is a "local" exchange (local rate center anyway), however calls from other local calling exchanges don't seem to recognize it as local; but since I use GrandCentral this hardly matters--might check into the local vs. non-local later on, though, just out of curiosity. Also, since I won't even be using the voice-mail feature, I haven't even looked at it. (GrandCentral handles all of my voice-mail.) 911?... couldn't care less.

No problems at all--couldn't have been easier or less of a hassle. If you order through the magicJack site, you get a 30-day free trial, but all that means to me is that you have 30 days to verify that it works [well enough], and I did that within a couple days. (VoIP isn't POTS/PSTN, so I expect some hiccups down the road; but I've been using VoIP for years, so that's just par for the course. For the most part, I've had excellent results using VoIP products. Vonage over Verizon DSL was probably the best in overall service, quality, & features (and simplicity); using GrandCentral with Gizmo & other services over FiOS offers pretty much the same service, quality, & features but costs quite a bit less, as in nearly free. I had more of a problem getting Comcast Digital Voice setup properly than magicJack; it took Comcast several days to get the voice-mail and CallerID working correctly, and a significant number of calls early on got an "All circuits are busy" message.) I purchased magicJack with the intention of a year's trial. For $20 or not much more per year I'll keep it for as long as it works.

If there's one problem with magicJack at all, it's that it requires the use of a PC. The problem is that if you take 1,000 PC's of 1,000 randomly selected people, then you can expect to see 1,000 different software and hardware configurations, and a good number of them won't support VoIP well if at all. That being the case, magicJack won't work for everyone. Not all broadband connections are "created equal" either, but that's just the nature of VoIP as opposed to being a problem with magicJack. If you've never used VoIP before on your existing broadband connection, you should first try something like Skype or Gizmo (softphones) just to verify that your PC/broadband setup works well for VoIP; they're free so all it will take is a little time.

On the other hand, a nice feature of a USB-connected telephony device is the potential interface with a desktop or even web-based address book. Imagine some Google gadget providing a link between the magicJack and, say, GrandCentral or even your Gmail contacts; perhaps a Thunderbird extension that interfaces with magicJack. Yeah, magicJack seems to have a Contacts list, but that's not where I want to keep my contacts, so it's not of much use to me.

UPDATE 01Aug2008: I've been using magicJack for more than a month now, and so far, so good. Voice quality is still quite good. Sometimes there'll be a little echo or someone's voice will sound a little "tinny", but VoIP will do that on occasion. Also, a couple times an outbound call failed to connect on the first try, but I tried again and the call went through OK. All in all, nothing much to complain about--no "chronic" problems. I've noticed that some users complain about a sound level problem and callers being unable to hear them well (or at all). I noticed this a little, too, but I just went into the sound recording properties for the device and set it to the max, which I've often had to do with computer-attached microphones, and all was well. Obviously, magicJack isn't perfect--reliability could be improved as well as the hardware/software interface, but it works very well for me and is definitely worth the money.

When I placed the order, the email confirmation message gave me a date on or after which I would be charged for the purchase, that date being 30 days after my order. They didn't charge me until that date, so I saw no "early charge issue" as reported by someone else.

member for 6.9 years, 1319 visits, last login: 2.5 years ago
updated 6.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by eestep See Profile

  • Location: Hyden,Leslie,KY
  • Cost Contract price not specified.
Good "Actually works pretty well"
Bad "No numbers in my area code...yet. They're adding more all the time though."
Overall "Come on...for $40 its worth a try."

I was told about MagicJack about 6 months ago by someone on the Internet that was in a business deal I was working on. He told me to help save some money I should try it out. After about a week of thinking about it I deceided to just go ahead and try it out. I ordered the thing and about a week or so later I got it. I plugged it in and after about a minute it was up and going. It worked as advertised...one of the few things that I've EVER received that was as good as they said.

The only negative things I can say is that it does have a crack and a pop every now and then...no more than any other VOIP that I've tried and they don't have my area code listed...so I have to use a number from a different part of the state. They are adding new area codes all the time...so hopefully they will have mine soon.

All in all...a GREAT product and have recommended it to others here at work. You should try it out and see for yourself!

member for 7.1 years, 38 visits, last login: 4 years ago
lodged 6.5 years ago

Comments:

Review by bigdaddy15 See Profile

  • Location: Arlington,Arlington,VA
  • Cost: $1 per month
  • Install: about 2 days
Good "Cheap, True Plug and Play"
Bad "Limited Capabilities, inconsistent call quality"
Overall "Great for the Price, Decent Service"
Web-site:
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(ratings match consensus)

I ordered 2 magicjacks, one for me and one for the 'rents 3 months ago. Installation was seamless, call quality when good, great. About 1 in 5 times weird clicking sound on the line like every third packet is dropped. Ships fast, great usefulness to plug in a legacy easy phone that everyone understands. The dialpad/software is the most annoying thing on earth - will not operate consistently in background, forgets your settings, crappy contact management and no skinning. Hope that someday they will improve that one. I would love to see a better website, currently useless. Thank god for dual monitors. Order process seamless, charged me after the trial period finished.

Very useful as backup to cell phone - very very useful to minimize charges when calling toll free numbers and wonderful to be on hold with - just put it on your computer's speakers and adjust speaker volumes so you can grab a sandwich while on hold etc.

Pretty consistent reliability other than clicking problem as long as your ISP isn't misbehaving. Now if only I could Verizon Fios to be rock solid....

Basically, unless you MUST have home phone service, if you have broadband get this and a cell phone and you are GOLDEN. Grandcentral makes a great team with it - hit star and swap calls to your cell. Stop paying twice for an extra line to your house.

Also sold my neighbors on it, they ordered 3, one works great and one had to be returned. They love it when it works.

member for 8.5 years, 43 visits, last login: 19 days ago
updated 6.6 years ago

Comments: